I’m no stranger to gardening-related injuries. My standard complaints include lower backache, blisters, and even – and this is weird – sore fingernails (am I the only one who gets that?). But I’ve never been injured in a plant frenzy before.
Oh sure, I’ve imagined it countless times: being trampled by a herd of Rosarians who have just spotted a must-have rarity, or assaulted by a spinster coveting the hot new plant I’ve got in my basket. But this – embarrassingly – was a self-inflicted injury.
See, I was at the Vancouver Garden Show yesterday. It was a decent event, and I met some really great people and some really great plants. Like any addict, I was on the lookout for my drug of choice – texture and foliage plants. Namely, those elusive few I haven’t been able to find in my local nurseries.
One of these was Euphorbia ‘Diamond Frost.’ I planted it last year and it looked amazing. Anyway, I am in love with this euphorbia, my only complaint being that it’s not hardy in my zone (8), and the reason for me having to buy it again this year (although, I learned at the show that you don’t need a greenhouse to overwinter it – apparently you can bring it indoors and it will keep blooming. Who knew?).
Anyhoo, I was sure the Proven Winners tent would have some for sale, but instead I heard the dreaded, “I’m sorry, someone just bought the last ones.” I actually cursed. Out loud.
“But,” said the nice lady running the booth, “there are some in our display garden and today’s the last day of the show. Come by at closing.” Yay!
So, at 15 minutes to closing, I’m making my way up the hill toward their booth. Then I spot a white-haired, diminutive lady heading towards the exit, staggering under the weight of several pots of Euphorbia ‘Diamond Frost’! More curses are uttered, and I break into a run.
When I reach the display garden, I dive into the fray of crazed gardeners digging up plants with their bare hands, thankful that I’m not forced to get violent with any seniors. I emerge, triumphant, with four of my coveted euphorbias, and as an added bonus, six Pennisetum ‘Rubrum’ and a half-dozen ipomoea.
It was only later, when I’d gotten my plant booty home safely, that I realized my legs were aching as a result of my little sprint (damn you, fast-twitch muscles) and my hands were full of slivers from digging in the bark mulch with my bare hands.
But it was worth it. Now I just need to come up with a convincing way to say, “oh, I ran a marathon on the weekend, that’s why I’m hobbling around.”
You are not a dork. A garden geek maybe, but not a dork.
Congratulations on your score.
Andrea, you totally crack me up. I think you should just be honest with people — own your injuries, you know? — and embrace the fact that, if you weren’t a true and passionate gardener, you wouldn’t be scrumming around with the other true and passionate gardeners in mulch beds at the closing bell of a garden show. Hilarious! Congrats on scoring the plant. :-)
I confess! Not only my fingernails, but my fingers get sore! To the point where I have trouble turning doorknobs, some nights, but since it wears off by morning I’m not too worried. I also develop a fantastic penguin shuffle after a day of monster weeding. Thanks for giving us a venue to deal with dorky garden injuries.
I also love the Diamond Frost. I have done lot of gardening in white this year, and it is fabulous. (as are most proven winner plants).
When you bring it in for the winter (dreaded digging again possibly) keep in mind it looks wonderful with poinsettias.
My most often garden boo boo is the deaded blister, second is the broken nail…but does that count as ailment?
I’m so glad that I’m not the only one whose fingers and fingernails get sore! I rarely complain about that because I thought I was just a wimp. lol.
Great haul, by the way. Glad to know that about the ‘Diamond Frost’ euphorbia–I may just try that if I can still find some PW pots around here.
Oh, it is so good to know I’m not alone! Thank you all for your confessions ;)
Ottawa Gardener says
I get sore fingernails when I don’t wear my fishin’ gloves. You know the ones for descaling something nasty. That’s the only way to keep my hands not exactly girlish but sort of presentable to the public.
Gardening just wrecks my hands. I hate wearing gloves because I can’t get a good grip on weeds and can’t use my fingers as well with them on. Plus dirt ends up getting down inside the gloves anyway so I don’t wear them and then my hands are a mess. I wish I could find a good pair to save my manicure.
Hmm… maybe this is a topic for a new post: best gardening gloves and hand cream on the market!
Digital Flower says
I now go to invitation only plant sales but for many years I went to the public ones. You really have to have a strategy in place before you get there (from previous years experience). It helps if you have a couple of people helping you.
you are not alone in sore finger nails…sore fingertips result in lots of weed pulling and digging (being lazy when i cant find the shovel)…ouch!
This reminds me of our native plant sale. It’s literally reminiscent of a Filene’s Basement wedding dress sale craze. — except it’s harder to pull a 2-inch prairie forb out of someone’s hands.